Everyone knows about the problems on defense, but with all the "weapons" on the offensive side of the ball, what's the general consensus as to why they are only ranked 20th in the league? What's the reason for the lack of execution?
David: Good question, and I think there are a variety of reasons. Firstly, I think it's in the offense's game plan to be more calculated and conservative. You only need to see the stats: he's 10th in attempts, he's 15th in yards per attempt and he's 13th in yards per game. Secondly, when the Cowboys do take their chances, they just aren't executing. Dropped passes, miscommunication with receivers and interceptions -- these are all things we've seen when the offense does try to break out of its shell.
Rowan: Sometimes the talent on offense can be slightly overstated. Most decent teams will have talented players at running back, quarterback, receiver and tight end. There hasn't been a star player at receiver opposite Dez Bryant, Jason Witten's receiving production from game to game has been sporadic and the Cowboys haven't figured out how to best use their newfound strong rushing attack. I think the play-callers at times haven't accepted what a strong running team they've been and that it's no longer a give up play to put the ball on the ground. A lot of it also has to do with their defense playing so poorly and the offense feeling the pressure to score on every drive.
LITTLE ELM, TX
I don't understand why the CBs aren't doing well against the pass. They practice against one of the best receivers in Dez. Why doesn't that translate over to other WRs?
David:I really think the [embedded_ad] struggles at corner are a part of a domino effect on the entire defense. The defensive line can't generate any pressure, so opponents game plan to throw. There's inexperience in the secondary because of youth and injury. To offset that, the corners play soft in the hopes of preventing any back-breaking plays, but they wind up allowing heaps of smaller, chunk plays. On top of that, it's got to take a toll on their psyche.
Rowan: If I played against Dez Bryant every day in practice, I wouldn't all of a sudden become a star cornerback. Going against Dez every day can help cornerbacks prepare or make them compete better, but it doesn't significantly change their talent. It's not as if all training camp the corners were destroying Dez in practice. I think the main issue is the lack of a pass rush and the ability to play physical at the line has hurt the secondary tremendously and contributed to sporadic play.